Sunday, July 02, 2006

L.A. District Attorney Letter to Santa Monica College

On or about June 26, 2006, the Public Integrity Division of the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office sent a 5-page letter to the Associated Students of Santa Monica College regarding alleged violations of the Ralph M. Brown Open Meeting Act. To view the DA's letter in Adobe PDF format, click HERE. To read Jeff Higley's comprehensive news coverage on his blog, The Siege Online, click HERE. SAVE SMC wishes to thank Jeff Higley for his vigilant efforts to monitor the ongoing violations of the Ralph M. Brown Act as a responsible citizen and student. I think there is no other person at SMC who understands the provisions of the Brown Act as Mr. Higley does. I only hope that SMC will correct its violations and not retaliate against Mr. Higley as a result. After all, he is only trying to keep our school accountable to its students.

California Government Code Section 54950 (Policy declaration) governing the Ralph M. Brown Act states:

In enacting this chapter, the Legislature finds and declares that the public commissions, boards and councils and the other public agencies in this State exist to aid in the conduct of the people's business. It is the intent of the law that their actions be taken openly and that their deliberations be conducted openly.

The people of this State do not yield their sovereignty to the agencies which serve them. The people, in delegating authority, do not give their public servants the right to decide what is good for the people to know and what is not good for them to know. The people insist on remaining informed so that they may retain control over the instruments they have created.

California Government Code Section 6250 governing the California Public Records Act states:

In enacting this chapter, the Legislature, mindful of the right of individuals to privacy, finds and declares that access to information concerning the conduct of the people's business is a fundamental and necessary right of every person in this state.

-- Des Manttari,
Phoenix Genesis

(c) 2006: Phoenix Genesis/MBS LP

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